Role of Women in the Koran

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For many generations, throughout various cultural backgrounds, women have been considered the lesser vessel of the human being. Men have, for the most part, been the superior in the relationship of the two. Even dating back to our readings, we can see this thought process through the writings of the Koran. In the following paragraphs, you will see just exactly how women were perceived and the notion of what the value of their worth was. The Koran begins by asking all to “Fear God, in whose name you plead with one another, and honor the mothers who bore you. God is ever watching over you.” We see this honor pretty much all throughout history and various cultures. Most have this notion of honoring the one who bore you into this world and gave you this physical life you have in the present. Aside from that, women were not really honored, except for the role of a wife. But even then, this role had restrictions and expectations that came with it. The Koran states to “Give women their dowry as a free gift, but if they choose to make over to you a part of it, you may regard it as lawfully yours.” It is assumed that the “you” in the statement above is referring to men. So, basically, the men have rule over giving your dowry and can take part in it if you so choose to let them. This is the first aspect of control we see of men over the lives of women. It then goes on to say, that the male shall inherit twice as much as the female. So, already we are seeing a comparison that the male is overtly superior to the female in this societal role. In many aspects of the role of the male and female, the male always gets the better half of the deal. Whether it be in estates, punishments, marriage, etc. The male shall inherit one-half of his wife’s and or wives’ estates if they die childless. The female shall only inherit one quarter of the male estate if he dies
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